Wednesday, January 25, 2012

NPA Causes P1.2B-Damage to Philippine Properties

CAMP GENERAL EMILIO AGUINALDO, Quezon City – A total of P1.2 Billion worth of properties were damaged as a result of 31 atrocities against business establishments and government infrastructure projects perpetrated by the Communist Party of the Philippines – New People’s Army – National Democratic Front (CPP-NPA-NDF) for the year 2011.
According to reports gathered from various field units of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP), most significant of the attacks were the simultaneous assaults on mining companies in Claver, Surigao del Norte in October.
Last year, the insurgents generated an income of at least P300 Million which they derived from extortion activities. This reflects the insurgents’ significant shift from projecting itself as a guerilla organization to a criminal group with extortion as its main fund-generating activity.
A major cause as to why the NPA is continuously resorting to this extortion-based violence is its continuously declining mass-base support. This has led them to resort to force and intimidation to coerce “soft targets” including private firms and individuals, even poor folks in far flung villages of the country, to give in to their demands.
NPA-Related Incidents Decline
The reports also state that NPA-initiated violent incidents (NIVIs) have declined since 2008. A total of 447 NIVIs was recorded for 2011 which is 11% lower than 2010’s 501. Of these, 178 or 40% were mere harassments of AFP/Civilian Active Auxiliary detachments while 142 or 31% were criminal activities including murder, kidnapping, bombing and arson to back-up their extortion activities. Only 69 or 15% were major tactical offensives like ambush and raid. While these incidents continue to decline, the rebels’ strength continues to decrease.  Their strength right now is 4,043 which 7.8% lower than the previous year’s 4,384.
Last 2011, one hundred security forces were killed due to atrocities committed by the NPA. This is 45% lower compared to 2010’s 184. The AFP also had fewer casualties this year, with 56 or 38% lower than the previous year’s 91.
The rebel group has also mastered the use of improvised explosive devices (IED) that are prohibited under the Comprehensive Agreement on Respect for Human Rights and the International Humanitarian Law (CARHRIHL) that they signed together with the government to prevent inflicting casualties to civilians. The NPAs are responsible for detonating 21 IEDs that killed a total of 28 people, five of which are soldiers and 23 are civilians. This only proves that they are not only targeting AFP personnel but more on innocent civilians and peace-loving citizens.
The NPA rebels avoid government security forces’ direct confrontation. Recent incidents involving AFP troops showed that the NPAs are only preying on CAFGUs and unarmed military personnel. This also roots to the NPA’s declining mass-base support which is why they are continuously aiming on soft targets including innocent civilians and private company owners for extortion.
Earlier this month, another extortion-based violence was executed by elements of the NPA showing its complete disregard of the law and resistance to progress and development.  Two trucks transporting bananas for Sumifru (Philippines) Corp. and Dole Philippines were torched by the communist rebels in Bukidnon en route to Davao City. At least 30 New People’s Army (NPA) rebels also attacked a banana plantation owned by Sumifru in Compostela Valley province but soldiers and company security personnel fought back resulting to the death of six of the attackers and the recovery of the perpetrators’ six high-powered firearms to include 30 caliber machine gun.
“We are tightening our grip against the NPA bandits with our focused combat operations. We are continuing our intensified internal security operations to thwart insurgency, as well as our close cooperation, coordination and collaboration with all other stakeholders, including the PNP and the private sector to avert future extortion-based violent incidents and other criminal activities.  The AFP will continue to be an integral partner of the PNP in maintaining peace and stability through the Joint Peace and Security Coordinating Center,” Dellosa said.
Recently, 24 provinces declared their localities a communist-insurgency free. This was supported by the AFP, asserting that the liberation of the provinces is a product of a sustained security operations as well as the strong cooperation with the citizens.
The AFP will work relentlessly to successfully liberate the 25 remaining provinces where communist-insurgency continues to exist. The AFP encourages all the other stakeholders, even the ordinary peace-loving citizens to join the fight against the barriers to the nation’s peace, stability and development. This implies the organization’s “people-centered” and “whole-of-nation” approach which is embodied in its Internal Peace and Security Plan (IPSP) “Bayanihan”.
Published on Monday, 23 January 2012 08:25
Written by PAO, AFP

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